UNH Manchester, Granite YMCA partner for ‘Wildcat Wellness Program’

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Michael Hickey and Hal Jordan.
UNH mascot Wild E. Cat gives a thumbs up as Manchester Dean Michael Hickey, center, and Granite YMCA CEO and President Hal Jordan, right, ceremoniously partner for the benefit of students.

MANCHESTER, NH –  UNH Manchester students now have an exciting new array of health and wellness options, thanks to an innovative program announced Sept. 18 by the University and the Granite YMCA. Effective this month, all full time students who utilize the Manchester campus will be part of the Wildcat Wellness Program and have full membership privileges at the Granite YMCA, which includes branches in Manchester, Goffstown, Londonderry, Portsmouth and Rochester.

“This is an amazing opportunity for our students,” said J. Michael Hickey, Dean of UNH Manchester.  “While our new campus in the millyard offers a world class academics environment, our health and wellness opportunities until now were limited.  This collaboration helps complete that circle and expands our campus to include the YMCA.”

Granite YMCA staffers celebrate wellness with UNH mascot Wild E. Cat.
Granite YMCA staffers celebrate wellness with UNH mascot Wild E. Cat.

Hickey said employees of the Granite YMCA will also benefit from this partnership through tuition grants which will provide reduced fee course enrollments.

“Our daily mission is to support healthy bodies and healthy minds,” said Granite YMCA President and CEO Hal Jordan.  “This collaboration with the University is very much in keeping with that philosophy.  The students benefit from a wellness perspective and our employees can take advantage of the tuition grants.”

The two organizations formally kicked off the program with a signing ceremony that included remarks from UNH President Mark Huddleston, UNH Board Chair Pamela Diamantis, student leader John Gonsalves, Dean Hickey and Mr. Jordan.  Following the remarks, students, staff from both organizations, community members and others walked from the campus to YMCA for a special reception.

Both Hickey and Jordan spoke of the partnership as further evolving over time.

“As we move forward, we’ll be looking to continually meet the needs of students,”  Jordan said, adding that future opportunities for students would be support for club sports and the addition of intramural and specialized sports programs.

“And because of our reciprocal arrangement with other YMCAs, UNH Manchester students will have access to other YMCA’s in NH as well as throughout New England,” he said.

“This has been and will continue to be a truly collaborative process,” said Hickey.  “In building this program, staff from both organizations as well as our students have been closely involved.  We view this as a true win-win.”


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About Carol Robidoux 5447 Articles
Journalist and editor of ManchesterInkLink.com, a hyperlocal news and information site for Manchester, NH.